Pity Roy Moore’s Wife

As the shameful revelations of Roy Moore’s past continue to snowball, I can’t help feeling sorry for his wife, Kayla (pictured with her husband).

In fact, I feel sorry for all the wives and girlfriends of the myriad celebrities and politicians being shamed by women who accuse them of sexual assault.

Some of the men being shamed surprise me. Who would’ve suspected George H. W. Bush of being a groper?

Moore, of course, isn’t just a groper. He’s accused of being a pedophile. And that’s as low as anyone can sink.

But I bet Kayla didn’t know that when she said, “I do.”

We men can look so earnest and trustworthy. But looks, as I’m sure you know, can be deceptive.

What’s a girl to do when her guy pops the question? Demand an affidavit of some kind? Have him checked out by a detective agency?

You know she isn’t going to do that when she has stars in her eyes and he’s pouring honeyed words into her ear.

She can only hope that she’s getting one of the good guys.

And when she finds out she did not?

Kayla, for one, is choosing denial.

Not her Roy, she insists. He would never do anything like that. It’s a witch hunt. Obviously, his accusers were paid by those wicked liberals. Didn’t they malign President Trump, too?

Kayla has apparently convinced herself that her man is innocent. She is gathering evidence to prove it, she says.

And she asks the good people of Alabama to pray for him.

I think they should pray for Kayla. What could she possibly have done to deserve a husband like Roy Moore?

Kayla’s appeal

The horrible reality

The blight is widespread

 

Making up the “News”

Trump and his minions constantly complain about “fake news” produced by left-leaning media. And the mainstream media are not completely blamesless.

Political reporting has always been suspect. This type of journalism seems to rely on more lenient standards than “hard news” reporting.

The practice of using unnamed sources, for example, is prevalent in political reports. Yet you seldom – if ever – come across a crime story where the reporter uses quotes from an unidentified witness.

“A source familiar with (whatever)” is dubious at best. But I can understand why political sources don’t want to be named. And it’s turning out that the information they’ve been providing lately is almost always accurate.

The real “fake news” is to be found on right-wing web sites.

There, you will not only read “stories” based on raw speculation and wild surmise but on totally concocted disinormation.

For example, recent “alternative news” includes a report that President Obama’s elder daughter Malia was arrested for beating up a 97-year-old woman. According to the story, she was in a gang of crowbar wielding Harvard students who descended on the old woman as she was leaving her church.

The report is accompanied by photo-shopped pictures, supposedly documenting Malia’s arrest.

The site that first ran the “story” has an almost invisible disclaimer warning that it is “satirical.”

But the story was picked up by other right-wing sites, and expanded to include the claim that the police officer who arrested Malia was “found dead under suspicious circumstances.”

I know what you’re thinking. How can anyone get away with this kind of blatant lying? You might think the purveyors of such trash would be arrested – or at least sued for libel.

But who knows where these fakers are? They could be in Madagascar. They could be in Nigeria. They could be in St. Petersburg, Russia. As recent evidence in the Russian hacking scandal shows, a lot of false news originates with paid Putin provocateurs.

I recently read that the comments flooding social media might not even come from humans. Automatic “bots” are churning these comments out to influence public opinion.

That’s the weakness of the web. You have to take what you get from it with a huge helping of salt. Especially when what you’re reading sounds too preposterous to be true.

More on Malia’s “arrest”

Putin’s propaganda

More on fake news

 

Whitewashed Sepulchers

 

Surely, we’ve learned by now to be skeptical of those who “protest too much”? From Jesus to Shakespeare,  sages have warned us to be wary of self-righteous, finger wagging  boors.

Like Roy Moor.

You probably know about Roy Moore.

He’s the creepy old man accused of fondling a 14-year-old girl when he was in his early thirties. Yes, the Republican candidate for Jeff Sessions’ old Senate seat in Alabama.

He’s running on a religious platform. Not just religious, but fire-and-brimstone religious.

Moore is a champion of Old Testament righteousness. He insists Americans should obey “God’s law” above human laws.

He is known as the “Ten Commandments Judge”  because he once hung a wooden plaque of the commandments on the wall of his courtroom. He was removed from office in 2003 when he refused to remove the plaque. But he was re-elected as Alabama’s chief justice in 2012.

Last year, he was kicked off the bench again when he refused to obey the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage.

Moore won the Republican Senate nomination  earlier this year.  He is scheduled to face Democrat Doug Jones in a special election December 12.

He is a breast beating, psalm singing, Bible thumping bigot. He has likened homosexuality to bestiality. He identified non-white Americans as “blacks, reds and yellows.” He claimed Barack Obama is not an American citizen.

Now, we’re reading about alleged sex crimes in his past.

Surely, you aren’t surprised?

I’m not. I’ve come to expect people like Moore to have skeletons in their closets. After all, Jesus warned us about “whitewashed sepulchers” that are “full of dead men’s bones.”

More on Moore

 

An Encouraging Sign – But…

 

 

Yesterday’s elections gave the Democrats cause for hope – but not for complacency. Results, especially in Virginia, were even better than the pundits predicted, and it looks as if a Blue Wave is building for 2018.

But Democrats should beware. If they get too comfortable – as they have so many times in the past – they could snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Last night’s good news should be a call to party  leaders to work even harder, not sit back and pat themselves on the back. They’ve got to get the rank and file fired up, as they were for Barack Obama. And keep them fired up, too.

Democratic voters are known for their lethargy. As soon as they see a glimmer of hope, they tune out instead of turning out.

And voter apathy is not the only danger.

The Democrats seem to be bent on self destruction.  Party bigwigs are snarling and sniping at each other, washing and rewashing last year’s dirty linen in public.

Donna Brazile’s book is one example of the self-serving disloyalty afflicting the party. Elizabeth Warren’s recent comments are another.

Both were favorites of mine. Now, I wonder about them.

This is not the time for Democratic self flagellation. This is the time to take advantage of an opportunity that might not come again for generations.

Trump has brought the Republicans to their knees. By standing with him, they are falling like dominoes.

America will not put up with the degeneracy that has come with Trump. Last night’s election results made that obvious. But voters need an acceptable alternative.

And the Democrats seem to be doing their best to deny the voters that choice.

So let’s end the bickering over the 2016 elections and make the best of the future, Democrats. Offer America a new and better deal instead of brooding over the past.

The country needs inspiration, not recriminations, a bright star of hope, not the dark night of despair.

Election results

Historic wins

Democratic bickering

More on Brazile and Warren

 

Answering Golf’s Siren Call

 

What is it about golf that grips its followers so relentlessly? It’s a mean old game designed to make a fool of us just when we think we’ve figured it out. And yet we keep coming back, again and again and again.

I can’t count the times I’ve sworn to give up the game. Yet here I am at 83 years old still out on the course. I had a respectable front nine yesterday then faltered on the back to score a miserable 93. But I plan to  try again on Thursday.

I shot 79 on my 80th birthday, didn’t I?  I might do it again. I just need to tweak my swing a tad – one more time.

Which brings us to Tiger Woods.

As you might know, Tiger has announced – for the fifth time – his return to competitive golf. He is in the field for the Hero World Challenge later this month in the Bahamas.

I know what you’re thinking. You’re laughing at the guy. He’s done this so many times before. And he’s failed every time. What chance does he have of making a successful comeback this time? He’s 42 years old, for one thing. And he’s a gimp to boot.

But golf is a weird game.

Time and again, some plodding unknown has turned in a flawless performance on the tour. Time and again some amateur hacker has posted a stunningly low score at his home course. Even the greatest have inexplicable on days and just as inexplicable off days. Jim Furyk shot 58, remember? He may never do it again. But he did it once. I bet he has no idea why.

Golf, as Forest Gump said about life, is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re going to get.

That might be why the game is so captivating.

Of course, Tiger is no ordinary golfer.

He is a golfing genius. He was breaking 100 when he was a toddler.  He won 14 major titles, second only to Jack Nicklaus. He has 79 PGA trophies in his cabinet.

When he says he is amazed at how well he’s striking the ball now, I say believe him.

If he gets the right bounces, if the putts drop, if his old bones hold up… who knows? We might live to see the second coming of the Tiger we once new.

And I, for one, can hardly wait.

Tiger’s latest comeback

 

Bring a Gun to Church?


 

When they came to take Jesus, Peter instinctively responded by drawing his sword and striking at one of the men, cutting off his ear. But Jesus immediately healed the man’s ear, saying, “No more of this.”

That was then, this is now.

Some of today’s self-proclaimed Christians have a different approach.

Texas state attorney general Ken Paxton, for example. He wants churchgoers to take a gun to services in case a mass murderer shows up.

In a Fox News interview after yesterday’s blood bath at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas, Paxton declared:

In Texas at least we have the opportunity to have concealed-carry, And so if it’s a place where somebody has the ability to carry, there’s always the opportunity that gunman will be taken out before he has the opportunity to kill very many people,

He suggested:

…arming some of the parishioners or the congregation so that they can respond if something like this, when something like this happens again.

I wonder if Jesus wept when He heard that.

The attack by disgraced USAF veteran Devin Patrick Kelley (photo at right)  left 25 members of the congregation dead. About 20 others were wounded. The gunman later killed himself, officials said.

It was the latest in a long list of mass-murder attacks across America in recent years.

You would expect America’s leaders to  be seeking gun control in the wake of the epidemic of gun violence sweeping the country but no, what they – many of them anyway – seem to want is more guns out there.

The love of guns in America verges on insanity. And with each senseless slaughter the passion grows.

Of course with each horror, we also hear calls for gun control, but nothing is ever done. Nothing can be done, it seems. There’s too much money at stake, the National Rifle Association is too powerful and there’s too great a lust for guns among the public.

More on the massacre

Paxton’s interview

The gun control debate

 

No Revolution After All

 

When will the true believers of the right  get it?  They insist on shutting out credible news sources and living in a “fake news” bubble when time and again the information they’re being fed turns out to be hogwash.

They were assured, for example, that “civil war” would erupt yesterday. They were warned that a violent left-wing group, known as Antifa, would take to the streets, smashing and burning, and a swarm of “patriots” would rise up to confront them.

So how did it go in your neighborhood?

As for our neck of the woods, nobody came marauding down Post Lane, disturbing the peace and frightening our cats.

My nephew Chris, who lives in Toronto but has access to America’s right-wing news bubble, tells me a few Antifa rebels turned out in Austin, Texas, and were greeted by a couple of hundred “patriots.” No windows were broken and a rousing patriot rally ensued.

I found no mention of an uprising in Yahoo News this morning, so I Googled it.

And apparently, all was quiet not only on the Post Lane front, but across the land. Search engines turned up nothing about a revolution erupting yesterday. There was a flood of stories predicting the “Antifa Apocalypse” but hardly a mention of what actually happened.

I found a report of a “protest” in Portland, Oregon, in which “verbal jousting” occurred between a handful of “anti-fascists” and even fewer “patriots.” But there wasn’t much more to be found because basically nothing happened.

Here’s how Newsweek described the “revolution” in New York City:

By 2:30 PM, a half-an-hour after the New York City event was supposed to begin, a little more than 300 people showed up, according to NYPD officers tasked with securing it. Many of the signs Refuse Fascism had prepared sat stacked against a metal railing. Organizers handed out leaflets about the Revolutionary Communist Party, an older, radical group with ties to Refuse Fascism. Over a thousand people had previously committed to going to the November 4 protests on Facebook, and roughly five thousand had pledged interest, but when all was said and done, burgeoning leftist groups like Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), protest mainstays like Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) and the masked anarchists that had captured the imagination of people on the far right failed to attend.

I can’t wait to read the right-wing explanations for this dismal anticlimax. Did they get the date wrong? That’s what they usually say when their bogus predictions turn out to be a bust.

Don’t you think the far-right disinformnation bubble would’ve lost all credibility by now? As Peter, Paul and Mary wondered so long ago:

Oh, when will they ever learn?

More on the bogus revolution

The Guardian’s explanation

The Newsweek report

Peter, Paul & Mary

 

The Red Menace Evolves

 

Back in the Sixties, we expected the Soviet Union to launch a nuclear attack on North America at any moment.

In Canada, where I was living then, some people even built bomb shelters in their basements and stocked them with canned goods, hoping to hide from the blast and wait out the radiation that would ensue.

I understand the same thing was happening in the United States.

Now, a half century later, I suppose the bomb shelters became recreation rooms long ago, but what’s left of the Soviet Union still poses an existential threat to America.

The world today is a much more complex place than it was then.  “War” is fought on many diverse levels. The primitive threat of nuclear annihilation no longer comes from the major powers but from rogue nations and terror groups .

China, for example, is quietly engaged in a quest for global economic dominance, colonizing Latin America, Africa and even Jamaica, cornering the world market on rare earth metals, pioneering advanced technology and aggressively pursuing a cutting-edge program to develop alternative fuels.

Meanwhile, the Russian threat has become far more sophisticated than it was when Khruschev and his shoe made headlines at the UN . Today’s “Red Menace” is psychological, not physical.

“Divide and rule” is a reliable strategy as old as civilization, and the Russians are using it in their attempt to destroy America.  By “poking fire” with bogus election ads and taking sides in the recent presidential election, for example, they sought to derail America’s democratic system of government.

And their malicious strategy seems to be succeeding.  America is in disarray.

There’s a floundering nutcase in the White House. The flames of partisan hatred engulf the land. States are threatening to secede from the Union. White supremacists are crawling out from under their rocks. The core values on which the nation was founded are disintegrating.

America’s ancient enemy is succeeding without launching a missile or firing a shot. And Khruschev’s  “we will bury you” prophecy will surely come true unless Americans recognize the danger in time.

Russia in the US election

More on the Red Menace

 

In the Service of Allah?

I know that Sayfullo Saipov (photo) didn’t notice the irony when he mowed down a crowd of strangers on a Manhattan bicycle path yesterday. He obviously wasn’t in a contemplative mood.

But what on earth did he think he was doing?

Serving Allah?

I don’t know much about Allah, but I assume he is the Muslim equivalent of our Jehovah. And I am sure Jehovah wouldn’t welcome that kind of tribute.

How can anyone believe this barbaric act was religiously motivated?

It was obviously the Devil’s work, not God’s.

I could understand someone committing random slaughter as an offering to Satan. But to Allah?

According to a web page I found:

“Compassion” is the most frequently occurring word in the Quran. Each of its 114 chapters, with the exception of the 9th, begins with the invocation ‘In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful…’ 

Of course there is the tradition of a vengeful God both in Islam and in Judaism. But mass murderers are not agents of any god. Not even the Thuggee’s god, Kali.

In my religion, God specifically says, “Vengeance is mine. I will repay.” And I understand the Quran has much the same message.

Islamic extremists make much of the Quran’s call to jihad, but as far as I could find out, jihad does not condone blind assaults on the guiltless. And when terrorists strike, they kill the just along with the unjust.

Anyway, I consider it blasphemy to appoint oneself as God’s avenging angel.  As puny humans, our bitterness and resentment are ours alone. Egotistical bombast and mindless rage have nothing to do with the Almighty – by any name.

More on the terror attack

More on Muslim compassion

On pondering jihad

 

Scary Enough for You?

This is the scariest Halloween yet. I’m not talking about the noisy “Hellbound” show the church next door insists on having at this time every year.

Or the affidavit Sandra just had to have notarized  to convince Capital One that she didn’t apply for their credit card (someone using her ID applied for a slew of credit cars and had them forwarded to Miami).

It’s actual physical harm I’m worried about.

There’s that crazy Kim Jong-un threatening to incinerate us, and that crazy Trump daring him to try.

And how about the Mueller investigation?

Mueller is beginning to turn over some nasty rocks, and what he’s finding is enough to scare anyone.

With charges filed against a former Trump campaign manager and his aide, and a Trump campaign advisor pleading guilty to lying to investigators, we’re getting close to a showdown.

And that could be ugly.

You can bet Trump isn’t going to wait for the noose to tighten around his neck. He will do something desperate – start a nuclear war with North Korea to distract us, for example.

Or fire Bob Mueller,.

If he fires Mueller, Congress might finally give Trump the boot. And his followers will not take that peacefully. They will take to the streets.

With guns.

What if the Republican controlled Congress refuses to get rid of Trump?

That would also trigger violent protests.  I understand a violent left-wing group called Antifa is preparing for armed resistance.

Either way, the prospect is scary.

Will armed thugs come marauding down Post Lane? Will they torch our house?

I know it sounds crazy, but these are crazy times.

If Trump fires Mueller